A painting of a small truck next to a large drill

Alexandra Noel was born in 1989 in Columbus, Ohio. She studied at the University of San Diego and Art Center College of Design, Pasadena. Noel’s uncannily small-scale paintings examine visual paradoxes and humorous absurdities, often focusing on babies, domestic objects, and suburbia in the context of late capitalism. She also explores far-flung or imaginary places as sets for tragic scenarios as well as reimagined scenes from films. Her compositions are sometimes treated like an image on-screen: zoomed in, cropped, stretched, or rescaled. Through this process the image becomes strangely flat, one-dimensional, and abstracted, while the panel it is painted on becomes sculptural. Comparable in size to handheld devices and sometimes made using her fingers in place of a paintbrush, her paintings call for intimate viewing and a reconsideration of the position of the viewer in the world. Noel maintains a writing practice—creating fiction that at times mimics the tone of poetry or a screenplay—a linguistic parallel to the surreal, dystopic, and fantastical elements in her paintings. She often accompanies her exhibitions with texts of her own, constructing narratives that pose questions more than they provide answers, adding to the work’s mystery and quasi-abstraction. Noel has had solo exhibitions at Bodega, New York (2019, 2016); Freedman Fitzpatrick, Paris (2019); and Parker Gallery, Los Angeles (2018).